Must ask questions for your Wedding photographer

What you need to know

Wedding Photography is not an easy profession (I forget the number of times guests at weddings tell me they have “given it a go but never again”), plus interviewing potential wedding photographers can be a daunting task. Regardless of if you are hiring Matt Trott Photography or another studio, we have created a list of questions to help you find the perfect photographer for your wedding day.

1. What is your primary style?

This should be your first and foremost question as this is the style of photography that interests you. At Matt Trott Photography our style is very much focused on a 90/10 rule - 90% is candid documentary photos of you and guests whilst 10% has a degree of posing (and by posing I mean we might engineer the situation, i.e asking you to walk towards me through a naturally well lit area on your couple shoot part of the day). Collectively, we find this blend provides the best mix of photos for our clients and allows you to enjoy your day.

2. How many weddings have you shot, and have you shot ones similar to mine?

This is a great question to get an idea of how much experience your photographer has in general. Years are not necessarily a good gauge of experience due to the length of time between booking and shooting the wedding, i.e someone starting out might have 30 weddings booked for the next two years, however, they may have only shot 5 at the point of your enquiry. As a minimum you ideally want someone that has photographed and supplied at least 20 weddings to date. 20 I found had given me the range of experience across types of weddings, different ceremonies, different weather and different times of year to ensure I feel I could advertise myself as having experience.

3. How many times have you worked specifically as a wedding photographer?

This question is designed to find out if the photographers are specialised in wedding photography and specialise in the type of wedding photography you want or are they “one-stop-shop-photographers.” who turn their hand at everything. Now there may not be anything wrong with trying your hand at multiple different photography types, I shoot family portraiture as well, however my specialism is wedding photography and I base 90% of my business around it to ensure I can offer a centre of excellence across the photos and service.

4. Will a contract of the services be provided? If so, can I get a copy?

There are a lot of studios that don’t create contracts for their wedding photography clients. You should require a contract from your photographer that details what services they will be providing, pricing, termination resolution terms, etc. A contract is created for your protection, and for the wedding photographer’s protection. It is best to hire a photographer that will build a contract with you, and be wary of photographers that “don’t typically create contracts for clients.” You should feel free to ask for a copy of the contract in advance of booking

5. What happens if the photographer is ill?

While it is unlikely that the photographer happens to get ill on your wedding day, there is still a chance. It is crucial that the photography studio does something to take care of the situation in case of illness. At Matt Trott Photography our policy is to ensure we get you an equally skilled photographer for your day, even if that means we pay extra for someone that charges more. We would arrange an emergency listing through multiple supplier contact points to ensure we get your coverage.

6. Do you have insurance?

Professional wedding photographers should have the proper insurance for their business. Insurance protects the photographer against equipment theft, but more importantly, it provides liability protection in case Great Aunt Sophie trips over the photographer’s bag and breaks her leg. If a wedding photographer does not have insurance, chances are they are new to the industry or are not taking their business seriously.

7. Will you colour correct my images?

Since colour correction is the basic post-production, it should be used on every single image. Many photographers will not colour correct any, or will only colour correct “select” images from your wedding. This means that you may have a lot of pictures where your skin tones are orange, yellow, red or even blue as the white balance is not adjusted in post.

8. What kind of equipment do you use? Do you have backups?

At Matt Trott Photography we use Nikon top quality bodies and multiple quality lenses. We always carry two main bodies on our person at all times - physically on our person - I carry a cowboy style holster with both cameras hanging from it. This may sound a bit odd but just imagine if a camera failed whilst I was at the altar waiting for the bride to walk down - I instantly have another camera on my person to ensure nothing gets missed. I also ensure that I have two wide angle lenses and two longer focal lenses. Although there are subtle differences between the lenses it means if one were to break I can continue to get the coverage akin to my style.

9. Should my event last longer than scheduled, will you stay? Is there an extra charge?

Knowing up front the photographer’s policy on overages is critical. You don’t want to be surprised when your wedding photographer asks for additional money before they release your pictures to you. Even worse, you don’t want your wedding photographer to just pack up and leave when their time is up.

10. What attire will the photographer and their assistants wear?

Even though the wedding photographers are a big part of the wedding day, it’s important that they are not distractions. As such, it’s important for the photographer to blend in as much as possible. If attire is important to you make sure you ask what your photographer will wear.

11. How long after the event will the photos, album, etc be ready?

Each wedding photography studio varies in the time it takes to produce and deliver your pictures. Studios that do not do any post production or colour correction may try to entice you by saying your photos will be ready within the week, or even the next day. However, most studios that develop and produce their images will take anywhere from 2 weeks to 6 months.

At Matt Trott Photography we contract up to a maximum of six weeks, however our average turnaround is closer to four weeks.

Matt Trott